25
Apr
09

The Flight of Gods 14. Laxminarcinva Temple, Veling

 

The Flight of Gods
by Mohan Pai

Shri Laxminarcinva Temple

Veling

Shri Laxminarcinva temple of Veling, originally of Shankhavali Village that bordered Kushasthali (Cortalim) in Salcete, is one of the temples which during the 16th century faced the fanatic fury ofthe Portugese proselytization. The idol of ShriLaxminarcinva was shifted to its present locationat Veling in Antruz (Ponda) which was then under the rulers of Sonde kingdom. Shri Laxminarcinva Murti brought from Sancoale

The temple was first housed in a modest hutment and then rebuilt in its present rich scenic surroundings in the later part of the 18th century.
In this temple, a stambh was installed in the sanctum sanctorium and over the years a suitable silver and gold Kavach with attributes of Shri Laxminarcimha was added. However, in 1974, the vigraha idol was installed in place of the Kavach.

The Mantap – photo by Mohan Pai

Over the centuries, due to weathering the temple had deteriorated and required renovation which was undertaken in the year 2000 AD. And the entire temple including the sabha mantap, roofing and the garbhagraha were restored to their original glory.


THE LEGENDS

Shankhavali and Kushsthali, the two flourishing and adjustant villages were at loggerheads on the question of their boundaries and were equally fed up with their age-old problem. A godly man from Punjab came as a chance visitor (according to another version it was a Gaud Saraswat Brahmin by the name ‘Naik’ from Karnataka). By his saintly nature he soon won the affection and confidence of the residents of both the villages. He placed the Shaligrama which he always carried with him for his daily oblations at the foot of the pipal tree of the temple of Shri Shantadurga for his sacramental routine. The two villages requested him to bring about a settlement of their dispute.
The Temple – Photo by Mohan Pai

The pious man said “ I shall move with my “Lotta” full of water and its beak would go on trickling till it gets empty and this line of trickling will decide your boundary”. The villagers accepted this solution. But after it was done, some of the Kushasthali villagers felt cheated and in revenge, they quietly took away his Shaligrama and threw it into the temple lake. When the saintly man discovered the loss he went on a fast and refused even water.

Intricately carved wooden pillars – photo by Mohan Pai

 
Fortunately, one of the elderly villager had a dream which indicated that the Shaligrama lay at the bottom of the temple lake and the object of worship was retrieved. The legend says that the deity was interpreted as Narcimva. After this incident, the deity rose in popular esteem and flourished into an important temple. The holy man took permanent abode in Shankhavali and married a local bride.
Tirthasthana – photo by Mohan Pai

The other legend with some historical background is about the fisher folk of Carnalla. With the Portugese threat imminent, the kulavis of the temple secretly removed the idol and were anxious to transport it across the Zuari river. When they reached the bank of the river the brave Carnalla fishermen came to their rescue and carried them across the river to a safe haven. This incident took place during the middle of the 16th century.

 

 
In recognition of their service, their descendants are treated as guest of honour for two days at the temple of Shri Laxminarcinva during the Kartik festival. The deity is taken in a boat in the temple lake, probably to perpetuate the memory of the first river crossing. This ritual is called ‘Sangod’.
Sangod – photo by Mohan Pai
The affiliate deities of the temple are Purusha, Paik and Bhandari. The main festivals celebrated are Sri Ramanavami and Navaratri and the annual Jatra is held in Magha Masa.

MY BLOG LIBRARY

For some of my articles visit:
For some key chapters from my book “The Western Ghats”, please log on to:http://westernghats-paimohan.blogspot.com/
For detailed blog (6 Chapters) on Mahadayi/Mandovi River Valley, please log on to:http://mohan-pai.blogspot.com/
For the book ‘The Elderly’ please log on to:http://oldagecare-paimohan.blogspot.com/
You can also access my blogs on Sulekha and WordPress:
For my book “The Flight of Gods – Hindu Temples & Shrines of Goa” please log on to:
http://mohanpai.sulekha.com/blog/posts/pageno-1.htmhttp://flightofgods.sulekha.com/blog/posts.htm
http://flightofgods.blogspot.com/

http://mohanpai.wordpress.com/

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